Saturday, June 03, 2006

Nebraska the Good Life

This is the motto of the state in which I was born and raised. It is a unique culture in central Nebraska. There is generally a lot less humidity here than in Iowa (where I now live) and a whole lot more wind (no, Nebraska isn’t windy because Iowa sucks). The people are friendly and life is somewhat simpler. The unique thing that is happening to the climate here is a little scary if you consider projections.

The Ogallala aquifer is the large underground lake that supplies central and western Nebraska with its water. People in Nebraska water their lawns all the time and the crops are continually irrigated. This aggressive water use is necessary to sustain the crops and communities. The problem is that the aquifer is slowly disappearing. In the small community of Bertrand where I have stayed the last few days, city wells drilled decades ago were around 300 feet in depth. The most recent well drilled in the last few years needed to go over 600 feet deep in order to insure a sufficient water supply for the years to come. Reservoirs that once sustained water recreation almost year around are now shutting down in early June because levels have dropped so drastically that boats are no longer able to dock.

I am not a mystic Christian looking for demons behind every bush or worrying about the apocalypse with every earthquake; however, it is a little scary imagining the state of Nebraska slowly becoming a desert. How much of this is caused by global warming? Is this part of a global climate shift that will render our world unable to sustain life as we know it? Those questions are for the scientists to debate. No matter the answer, our eroding climate is simply a reminder that life as we know will one day end, and at that point we will begin an eternal existence that will no longer be subject to tears, crying, pain, tornados, cancer, aging, sickness, drought, and the like.


C-Dub said...

Good information there Scott. Thanks for sharing this. I didn't know about the aqauifer...or else I just forgot about it. My only question though is that are you sure Nebraska isn't windy because Iowa sucks? Just checking!!! :)

GO BIG RED!! GO Cyclones!!

scooterpastor said...

Chad, lately Nebraska has been windy because the Huskers have sucked. Who knows, maybe the winds of change are coming. I certainly hope so. I'm still a Husker at heart.